What is the gray coating on the surface of my baking chocolate?

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If you have a cooking question, our expert, Marge Perry, can answer it. Marge teaches home cooks in her classes at the Institute of Culinary Education in New York City. She is an award-winning food writer, longtime contributor for Cooking Light and a number of other leading food magazines, author of the blog A Sweet and Savory Life, columnist for Newsday, and has contributed to over 20 cookbooks.

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Help! I went to bake with my chocolate and there is something gray or white on the surface. Is it mold? Is it usable?

No worries: that gray–white cloudy covering on your chocolate is called "bloom", and it is simply the result of being stored for a while at a somewhat warm temperature. What you're seeing is a result of some of the melted fat migrating to the surface. Your chocolate is still perfectly good for eating and cooking.

If you love baking with chocolate, see our collection of Chocolate Recipes.

Marge Perry
Feb, 2011
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